Synopsis via Goodreads: How hard would you fight for the one you love?
Taryn Landry was there that awful night fourteen years ago when Long Acre changed from the name of a town to the title of a national tragedy. Everyone knows she lost her younger sister. No one knows it was her fault. Since then, psychology professor Taryn has dedicated her life’s work to preventing something like that from ever happening again. Falling in love was never part of the plan…
Shaw Miller has spent more than a decade dealing with the fallout of his brother’s horrific actions. After losing everything―his chance at Olympic gold, his family, almost his sanity―he’s changed his name, his look, and he’s finally starting a new life. As long as he keeps a low profile and his identity secret, everything will be okay, right?
When the world and everyone you know defines you by one catastrophic tragedy…
How do you find your happy ending?
*I received a copy of this book from the author/publisher in exchange for an honest review.*
After a horrific school shooting takes the life of her younger sister and classmates, Taryn Landry decided to devote her life to finding a way to help prevent such a tragedy from happening again. But that’s easier said than done as she struggles to find a way to get her program off the ground and into actual schools. It doesn’t help that all this work and no play has her stress levels sky rocketing and her friends concerned for her well-being. Taking their advice, Taryn decides to sign up for training at the new gym where she unexpectedly finds herself catching the eye of one of their trainers…
Shaw Miller wants nothing more than to blend in and to keep his true identity under wraps. But the last thing he expected was for a girl like Taryn to walk into this life and shake things up. He knows that if the truth about his past gets out, it could not only ruin his budding relationship with Taryn but it also might force him to leave behind this new life he’s worked so hard to build. But when it comes to love, the heart wants what it wants and sometimes fighting it is a losing battle all on its own.
In all honesty, I didn’t go into this book with the best attitude. I was a bit salty mainly for two reasons: (1) I thought that the next book in this series would be Kincaid’s story and I have been dying for her HEA because she’s my favorite character in this series and I just wanna see her happy already and (2) we didn’t see much of Taryn in the previous two books so I was kind of surprised that she was getting a book at all. But it didn’t take too long for this story to suck me in and somehow Roni Loren managed to make me go from not giving a damn to wanting to know how this story would end.
Of all the books in this series so far, The One You Fight For probably has the most complex story line yet. The series already touches upon the topic of school shootings and the aftermath of such tragedies but I would’ve never thought to pair one of the survivors up with the shooter’s brother! Roni Loren took a chance and she somehow made this forbidden romance work. I low key had chills while reading this because I could literally feel the build up of emotions with each chapter and I just knew that once shit hit the fan, I would be balling my eyes out. AND I TOTALLY DID! I really appreciate the fact that Loren took her time with the romance because both Shaw and Taryn have a number of issues to work through before either one of them are ready to jump into a relationship. This romance also brought about a lot of healing for not only for Taryn and Shaw, but also for all the people affected by the shooting because everyone stopped playing the blame game and instead they found a way to come together to bring about change that would actually help stop another event like this from happening again.
I really enjoyed getting to know Taryn better in this book. It took a while for me to warm up to her because she’s a bit intimidating when you first meet her. She’s all numbers and stats and I was waiting to see a more vulnerable side to her. With each passing chapter, it was like we got to chip away at her hard shell and slowly but surely we got to see a woman who struggles to hold it together. That was when I truly started to connect with Taryn and I’m glad we got her story after all. Shaw on the other hand broke my heart. He was a man who had it all and then in an instant he lost it all. I get why people were angry with him but at the same time I didn’t think Shaw was to blame for his brother’s actions. I’m so happy that he got a second shot at a happy ending and was able to work through his pain and guilt to find a woman like Taryn. Things may not have been easy for this pair, but the fight was worth it in the end.
The One You Fight For was yet another emotional installment in The Ones Who Got Away series and if you haven’t picked up these books yet, YOU NEED TO ASAP! Now I anxiously await the final book in this series because I know Roni Loren has saved the best for last. I’m ready with my box of Kleenex to see my girl Kincaid get her happily-ever-after and I can’t wait to meet our hero too!